Date(s) - 28 Sep 2019 until 29 Sep 2019
10:00 AM - 4:00 PM
Achieving a fundamental, long term sense of contentment, satisfaction and meaningfulness is something that has challenged the human species for millennia. Can a deeper understanding of our ecological place in the world provide answers that have been overlooked by modern lifestyles that focus on consumption and instant gratification?
This two-day workshop focuses on deepening ecology in four senses:
Firstly, understanding the effects of the human species’ disturbance of planet Earth’s life-support systems and why the science of ecology needs to deepen and recognise the human species as a member of the planetary ecosystem.
Secondly, looking at warning signs about the causes of our current predicament that we, as a species, have created ourselves, but also continually ignored for generations. How can we hear and respond to the warning signs now?
Thirdly, exploring how human behaviour is driven by basic desires: to protect from harm, pursue pleasure, and reproduce. In other species, these drives are constrained by bio-ecological limits and resulting scarcity means they need to pursue them almost incessantly. Humans have temporarily broken through these limits, thanks to the extra energy from burning forests and fossilised plant and animal bodies – carbon! This creates the conditions for this same consuming drive, and its associated anxieties, to accelerate. We are now experiencing the effects of this in every part of the Earth. We have translated basic physical needs into the pursuit of emotional and commercial hankerings. The workshop will explore how the cognitive-cultural elaboration of these unconscious instinctual drives is the root cause of ecological breakdown.
Fourthly, reflecting on how our inner human processes need to become our focus of attention, as a species and as individuals. Asking ourselves what meanings and motivations are substantial enough to dominate and move us on from being driven by a combination of fearful anxieties off-set by short-term pleasures linked to consumption.
Paul is a psychotherapist (in private practice), an ecologist and anthropologist. With 30+ years’ experience in ecological education and research, he has been publishing on what is now known as ecopsychology since the 1990s, focusing on its psychospiritual and cultural dimensions. Paul has held research and teaching posts at Oxford and Open Universities, and University College London. He researches psycho-spiritual and socio-cultural causes and consequences of ecological problems, the possible evolution of sustainability, human evolution in transpersonal (and eco-systemic) context, and clues to the latter within spiritual-religious texts, scriptures and myths. He has always been inspired by the invisible web of relationships between beings that constitute the eco-system. He runs a course on Transpersonal Ecopsychology (aleftrust.org) and has tutored since 1995 on the MSc Education for Sustainability at London South Bank University.
Publications include: Trees of knowledge,death and possible life: Ancestral warnings of ecosystemic holocaust, its psychospiritual causes, and clues to resolution (Self & Society) Longing to be Human: evolving ourselves in healing the Earth (Rust & Totton ed. Vital Signs), Finding Meaning without Consuming, Psychotherapy as an Eco-Systemic Activity (The Psychotherapist, Winter 2008/9), Psychological and Cultural Dynamics of Sustainable Human Systems (UNESCO Encyclopedia of Life-Support Systems).
Glenn first became involved with Denmark Farm through the Ceredigion Biodiversity Enhancement Scheme in 2004. He became a trustee of the Shared Earth Trust in 2010. He worked in farming for eight years when he first left school before going back into education and qualifying as a teacher. He has taught in schools, further education and higher education and was Head of Education at the Earth Centre, a large Millennium Project devoted to sustainable development. Since 2002 he has worked as a consultant and researcher in education for sustainable development and global citizenship, while also teaching part time on a Master’s degree in Education for Sustainability. He is particularly interested in the educational aspects of Denmark Farm Conservation Centre.
Fees: £100 per person (£75 students/low-waged)
Fee includes two days teaching, all teaching materials and hot drinks during breaks.
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Accommodation is available for an additional charge:
All proceeds from our events and holidays are ploughed directly back into managing our 40 acre nature reserve. Thank you for your support and please do come to visit soon.
You maybe interested in other ecology, conservation, species ID, sustainable living and natural crafts courses at Denmark Farm. See our full events page